The approach of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, where NHK has promised 8k broadcasting, is expected to spur a new round of TV resolution increases, says IHS. 8k TV shipments having not yet begun in serious volumes – 2,700 will be shipped this year – but IHS expects 911,000 to be shipped in 2019.
IHS’s forecast centres on the 65″ screen size, which has the highest volume in production and will account for almost 80% of 8k TV shipments by the end of the forecast period. Analyst Paul Gray notes that screen size will be the biggest (no pun intended) inhibitor to 8k TV growth. “8K requires a very large screen or the higher resolution becomes invisible at normal viewing distances”, he said. “The average screen size in the TV market has grown by an inch each year over the past decade, but it is still a long haul before sizes over 70 inches become commonplace”.
New Chinese LCD fabs are expected to enter production within the next three years. This will dramatically increase 65″ 8k TV capacity. Chinese consumers have already proven willing to adopt new TV technologies early (see UltraHD). A combination of local production and consumer demand is expected to make China a thriving 8k market.